By Jim Maltzman: Former world title challenger Sergiy Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 KOs) has been elevated to #1 in the World Boxing Council rankings at middleweight, according to @MikeCoppinger. The move for the 2008 Olympian Derevyanchenko puts him in position to potentially face WBC 160-lb champion Jermall Charlo (30-0, 22 KOs) in 2020.
Although the WBC still hasn’t made the 34-year-old Derevyanchenko the official mandatory to Charlo, the fight makes sense for him due to both fighters being with Premier Boxing Champions.
Derevyanchenko #1 contender to Jermall Charlo
“Sergiy Derevyanchenko has been elevated to No. 1 in the updated WBC middleweight rankings. Jermall Charlo has yet to make a mandatory defense of his WBC middleweight title, paving the way for a likely fight between Charlo and Derevyanchenko in 2020. Both are PBC fighters,” said @MikeCoppinger.
It’ll be interesting to see if Charlo elects to defend against Derevyanchenko in 2020, as some fans believe that he’s only interested in milking his WBC middleweight title against soft opposition.
Charlo was elevated to WBC middleweight champion by the World Boxing Council on June 27 last year after they gave Canelo Alvarez the WBC Franchise tag. In Charlo’s 2 successful defenses of his WBC 160-lb title, he’s defeated Brandon Adams and Dennis Hogan. Those fighters were considered soft jobs by a lot of boxing fans, and they didn’t like the idea of Charlo making easy title defenses rather than facing the best competition available.
A lot of fans felt that Derevyanchenko was given a raw deal in his last fight in losing a 12 round unanimous decision to Gennadiy Golovkin on October 5 at Madison Square Garden in New York. GGG and Derevyanchenko squared off for the vacant IBF middleweight title, and Golovkin barely edged it by the scores 115-112, 115-12, 114-113.
Derevyanchenko getting another chance
WBC showing that they’re a class act in elevating Derevyanchenko #1, since fans all around the world felt that he deserved the victory in his fight with Golovkin last October.
Derevyanchenko looked like the winner in that fight, and the boxing fans weren’t happy that GGG was given the win. They booed Golovkin all throughout his post-fight interview inside the ring. That had to be disheartening for Golovkin, because he’d been a fan favorite at MSG for a long time.
Derevyanchenko put everything he had into winning that fight, and ended up with nothing to show for the blood and sweat he put into the contest. After being dropped by GGG in round 1, Derevyanchenko came storming back to get the better of him from rounds 2-9.
Golovkin landed a lot of heavy shots seemed to take a lot of the steam out of Derevyanchenko in the championship rounds. However, all through that, Derevyanchenko outworked and out-hustled Golovkin and looked like he deserved the win.
Sergiy increased his popularity with GGG fight
One positive that came out of Derevyanchenko’s loss to Golovkin last October was increased popularity. The effort that Derevyanchenko put into the fight won him a lot of ne fans, and he came out the winner in that respect.
Had Derevyanchenko won the WBC title, it would have meant a lot of money for him. First off, Golovkin would and DAZN would have been interested in a rematch. Golovkin isn’t looking to give Derevyanchenko a second chance. He’ll be defending the IBF middleweight title in March against mandatory Kamil Szeremeta, and then maybe fighting Canelo Alvarez in September 2020, depending on whether the Mexican star is interested in giving him the trilogy fight
What was surprising was how Derevyanchenko was able to back Golovkin up constantly during the fight. Instead of doing it with head shots, Derevyanchenko concentrated on going to the body of GGG, and exposed a major weakness in the Kazakhstan fighter’s game.
Golovkin didn’t react well to getting hit to the body by Derevyanchenko. Sergiy hurt Golovkin on more than one occasion with his body shots, and outworked him. Despite being cut badly over his right eye.
Will Canelo fight Derevyanchenko?
WBA/WBC [F] middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs) hasn’t picked out his next opponent for May 2. Derevyanchenko would be an idea opponent for Canelo to face in order to setup a trilogy fight with Golovkin next September. By facing Derevyanchenko, Canelo would give boxing fans to compare him with GGG in dealing with a common opponent.
Canelo won’t gain much credit in taking on WBA ‘regular’ middleweight champion Ryota Murata. Besides, the Japanese fighter is signed with Top Rank Boxing, and he fights on ESPN. The options for Canelo at 168 are pretty slim. His promoter Oscar De La Hoya already said this week that WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders isn’t the frontrunner for Canelo’s May 2 fight.
IBF champ Caleb Plant and WBC 168-lb champion David Benavidez are both with PBC, and fight on a different network than Canelo. The Mexican star isn’t likely to want to take on the 6’3″ WBA Super World champion Callum Smith due to his size and punching power.
With all those fighters likely not getting the fight with Canelo, it could open the door for Derevyanchenko to get the fight. He fights on DAZN, and he was just involved in a controversial fight with GGG. It would be an easier match for Canelo to make, but obviously there wouldn’t be a huge amount of fan interest in that fight. At the same time, the casual fans WON’T be excited at seeing Canelo fight these guys:
- Caleb Plant
- Callum Smith
- Billy Joe Saunders
- Ryota Murata
- David Benavidez
- Jaime Munguia
- Demetrius Andrade